New Ads Put Porsche on a Pedestal

Carmichael’s Debut Targets Those ‘Willfully Possessed’ By Brand
CHICAGO–Carmichael Lynch’s first campaign for Porsche is aimed squarely at sports car enthusiasts–those who might purchase the brand and those who can only dream about it.
The campaign moves away from past work by positioning Porsche as a car not just to own, but to covet, said John Colasanti, director of account management at the Minneapolis agency.
“We’re better off focusing on the noble aspects of the brand,” Colasanti said. “This campaign is more about defining what the brand’s all about and letting people self-select to it.”
Rather than follow the strategy of making Porsche more accessible, the campaign targets the brand’s core enthusiasts, both owners and those who aspire to be–a group the agency deemed the “willfully possessed.”
The campaign includes two TV spots. In one, an all-wheel-drive Carrera 4 smoothly handles a mountain road in driving rain as a voiceover states, “It’s one beautiful day after another.” The other shows a woman, suspicious that her husband is cheating, tracing a mysterious phone number to a Porsche dealership.
The blues music in each complements the stories, said Tim Mahoney, general manager of marketing. “A lot of car ads use music for music’s sake,” he said.
The spots will air during NFL broadcasts throughout the season. Print ads will initially appear in enthusiast books, Mahoney said. They display the cars against panoramas with headlines such as, “You dream about it. You decide to get it. Then you enter kindergarten.”
The work does not employ the longstanding tagline, “There is no substitute,” which Mahoney said was “on holiday.”
“We didn’t think [the tag] spoke to the core enthusiast,” Mahoney said. “They know there is no substitute.”
Porsche Cars North America, Atlanta, spent $10 million on ads last year, per Competitive Media Reporting. Spending is expected to be comparable this year, Mahoney said.
Carmichael won the account in February after a review that included Kowloon Wholesale Seafood Co., Santa Monica, Calif.; Leagas Delaney, San Francisco; The Richards Group, Dallas; and WestWayne, Atlanta.